Hiram College

Written by Dana Lyons ’17

Lyons participated in the Spring 2017 3-week trip to the United Kingdom with Professors Rick Hyde and Paul Gaffney.

Near the middle of the trip, we arrived in Stratford-Upon-Avon. Stratford was absolutely filled with Shakespeare memorabilia.  It was intense. This area was very fun to explore and I feel that I have learned a lot from this area about his life. We spent two nights here exploring the area and seeing shows. The first night we arrived later in the evening and only had time for a quick dinner for a show that was planned. We dropped our bags off in the hotel rooms and went our separate ways for dinner.

Some of us ended up at this pub that was very old and rustic looking inside, which made for a cool experience. It was a very comical show that was performed well in my opinion. The following day we spent studying Shakespeare and his life. We started out at his birthplace, which we were able to see the home and what the inside would have looked like in his time for Shakespeare and his family. Here I learned that Shakespeare was also a glove maker which I didn’t know. Next we went to New Place, this is the area where Shakespeare raised his kids and lived with his family. Unfortunately the owner of this place hated tourists so he demolished the house. Later a tourist area and a small museum was put in the place to show what the house would have looked like and small relicts that were found in the area. I really wish the house was still there, as it would have been cool to see.

Next, we went to the school yard where Shakespeare went to school. This was very cool to see because the building inside was kept in really good condition and they also had actors that acted as the teachers to give a real life experience. Here, they had desks on display of carvings that the children wrote while Shakespeare was in school. Lastly we went to the church and saw where Shakespeare and his wife were buried.

Everything was all so cool to see and gave us such a huge insight to Shakespeare life. It was incredible to see how different places in Stratford kept their appearance and didn’t modernize because of Shakespeare. The history in this area really took me by surprise. We ended the day with another show, this night we was a performance of Julius Caesar, which of course was done well. Overall Stratford was a great learning experience. The entire area was covered in stories and history that was incredible to see and experience. I was very happy to see that Stratford did not change the area to be more modern and it trying to preserve the town that Shakespeare lived in.